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Ombudsman freezes levy and case fees

The Financial Ombudsman Service levy and the case fee for 2010/11 have been frozen at 2009/10 levels.

The 2010/11 budget shows the industry levy will stay at £19.5m and case fees at £500.

The average cost of handling a case is forecast at £587 for 2009/10 and is expected to fall to £540 in 2010/11.

The number of free cases per firm will stay at three.

The FOS expects a 27 per cent increase in workload in 2010/11 to a record 210,000 closed complaints compared with 165,000 in the current financial year.

Operating costs will rise from £96.6m, forecast for 2009/10, to £113.5m in 2010/11.

It says, as a result, operating costs will increase from £96.6m, forecast for 2009/10, to £113.5m in 2010/11. This includes the cost of 300 additional casework staff.

Despite this, the FOS says the minimum levy for IFAs and mortgage brokers is likely to be static or fall subject to a separate regulator consultation.

The FOS says the substantial increase in the volume of new cases expected in 2010/11, rising to 190,000, reflects the continued impact of the recession.

Of the new cases, it expects 85,000 banking complaints, 46,000 PPI complaints, 25,200 investment cases, 23,600 insurance complaints and 10,200 consumer credit complaints.

Baronworth director Colin Jackson says: “Not having any increase and possibly a decrease in adviser levies is good news, particularly in the current environment.”

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  1. They need more staff and a substantial increase in budget ? Would that IFAs could expand in a similar manner with someone else footing the bill. Of course they could, like everyone else, reduce their workload and costs by not actively touting for business amongst consumers with mandatory advertisements provided by the true industry which funds them.

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